HEART HEALTHHeart Disease
As one of the most common health problems facing Americans today, heart disease is the number one cause of death in the United States. It claims the lives of more than 750,000 people every year.
Heart disease is a chronic condition, which means that once you have it, it never goes away. Even though there is no cure, there are many treatment options available to help control and suppress symptoms. Depending on the severity of the condition, doctors may recommend options ranging from diet and lifestyle changes to medications and/or surgical procedures.
Cause of Heart Disease
Heart disease, sometimes called cardiovascular disease or coronary artery disease, starts as damage to the lining and inner layers of the coronary arteries. The cause of coronary artery disease is not cholesterol, like many doctors believe. In fact, several medical studies show that cholesterol has no link to the disease.
Instead, inflammation of blood vessel walls is the cause of heart disease. The following can inflame blood vessels:
+ Low testosterone
+ Nutritional deficiencies
+ Pharmaceutical drugs
+ Heavy metals like mercury and aluminum
When the arteries become damaged, plaque begins building up on inner surfaces, restricting blood flow. When this plaque ruptures or breaks, the body responds by forming blood clots. This can further restrict blood flow or even block the artery completely. The result of a blocked artery is a heart attack.
Heart Disease Prevention
There are many things you can do to help prevent or delay the onset of heart disease. The first step is fighting potential inflammation. Incorporating some or all of the following habits into your regular routine will help you to follow a heart healthy lifestyle.
+ Avoid smoking and secondhand smoke
+ Don’t consume excessive amounts of alcohol
+ Avoid salt and foods high in sodium
+ Maintain healthy blood pressure and cholesterol levels
+ Supplement your diet with vitamins and nutrients
+ Get regular exercise three to five times per week
+ Maintain optimal hormone levels
+ Eat an anti-inflammatory diet full of fruits, vegetables, and leafy grains
In addition to the suggestions above, be sure to visit your doctor regularly. Talk about your concerns, and follow his/her recommendations for keeping your heart healthy.
Heart Disease Statistics
Coronary artery disease-related illnesses are the number one cause of death for both men and women in the United States. This is why it’s so important to be proactive and take the necessary measures to reduce your own risks. The statistics below will show you exactly how common — and dangerous — this disease is.
+ It kills more people than all forms of cancer combined.
+ Someone in the U.S. has a heart attack every 34 seconds.
+ One American dies every 60 seconds from heart disease-related illness.
+ Each year, almost 750,000 Americans suffer a heart attack.
+ Over 600,000 people die from the disease each year in the U.S.
+ Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death for African-Americans, Hispanics, and Caucasians.
Remember, there is no cure for heart disease. Your best defense against this killer is taking action to reduce your risks now. Simple changes to your lifestyle and diet will keep your heart beating strong and healthy for many years to come.